Houston organizations rally together to help children prepare for school

The city of Houston constantly ranks in the top three most charitable cities in the U.S., according to Charity Navigator. This past weekend was a perfect example of how the philanthropic mindset extends from individuals to corporations, media and community organizations, as Houstonians rallied together to help Buckner send more than 1,200 vulnerable Houston-area kids back to school.

Back-to-school events were held at the Buckner Family Hope Center at Aldine and at the Buckner Family Hope Center at Reed Road (in South Houston). All registered families received backpacks and school supplies thanks to the generosity of Halliburton Charitable Foundation and Noble Energy.

“It is such a huge deal to provide backpacks for our families. A lot of people don’t realize the high cost associated with this time of year, but on average in the U.S., it costs more than $600 for a family to send their children back to school. These efforts really help minimize the costs for families who are working to improve their financial situation,” said Shawna Roy, senior executive director for Buckner Children and Family Services of Southeast Texas.

Aldine’s distribution included nearly 100 volunteers from Noble Energy, which sponsored the event. The Houston Dash and Houston Dynamo were also on hand, including player Nichelle Prince and mascot Dynamo Diesel. Additional community vendors offering resources included the Barbara Bush Literacy Foundation, Lone Star College and Houston Food Bank.

The distribution on Reed Road in South Houston included Dr. Seuss’ Cat in the Hat, courtesy of PBS Kids and Houston Public Media TV 8. Nonprofits Star of Hope and Clothed by Faith provided snack bags and school uniforms respectively, while volunteers from Halliburton and Hope City Church were on hand to help families.

“Families should not have to choose between feeding their families and buying school supplies – and with the help of Noble Energy, Halliburton and others in the community involved with our Buckner back-to-school drives, the families we serve are able to do both,” added Roy.

Shoes and socks were provided through Buckner Shoes for Orphan Souls®.

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